Irish Surnames And Their Meanings

by | Jan 13, 2017

Ever wondered what your surname stands for? When you hear the surname Kennedy,  O’Neill or Gallagher, you instantly know they are either Irish or of Irish Descent. The Irish people have influenced the world and their surnames have become well recognized and associated with the Emerald Isle

 

Rank       Name Gaelic Equivalent Meaning
1  Murphy Ó Murchadha sea-battler
 2  Kelly  Ó Ceallaigh bright-headed
 3  O’Sullivan  Ó Súilleabháin  dark-eyed
 4  Walsh  Breathnach   Welshman
 5  Smith   Mac Gabhann  son of the smith
 6  O’Brien   Ó Briain   high, noble
 7  Byrne   Ó Broin   a raven
 8  Ryan   Ó Maoilriain   king
 9  O’Connor  Ó Conchobhair  patron of warriors
 10  O’Neill  Ó Néill  from Niall of
the Nine Hostages
 11  O’Reilly  Ó Raghallaigh  
 12  Doyle   Ó Dubhghaill   dark foreigner
 13  McCarthy  Mac Carthaigh   loving person
 14  Gallagher  Ó Gallchobhair  lover of foreigners
 15  O’Doherty  Ó Dochartaigh   hurtful
 16  Kennedy  Ó Cinnéide   helmet headed
 17  Lynch   Ó Loinsigh   seafarer, exile
 18  Murray  Ó Muireadhaigh  lord, master
 19  Quinn   Ó Cuinn   wisdom, chief
 20  Moore   Ó Mordha   majestic
 21  McLoughlin  Mac Lochlainn  viking
 22  O’Carroll  Ó Cearbhaill   valorous in battle
 23  Connolly  Ó Conghaile   fierce as a hound
 24  Daly   Ó Dálaigh assembles frequently
 25  O’Connell  Ó Conaill   strong as a wolf
 26  Wilson  Mac Liam   son of William
 27  Dunne   Ó Duinn   brown
 28  Brennan  Ó Braonáin   sorrow
 29  Burke   de Búrca   from Richard de Burgh
 30  Collins  Ó Coileáin   young warrior
 31  Campbell     crooked mouth
 32  Clarke   ÓCléirigh   clergyman
 33  Johnston  Mac Seáin   son of John
 34  Hughes  Ó hAodha   fire
 35  O’Farrell  Ó Fearghail   man of valour
 36  Fitzgerald  Mac Gearailt   spear rule
 37  Brown   Mac an Bhreithiún  son of the brehon (judge)
 38  Martin  Mac Giolla Mháirtín  devotee of Saint Martin
 39  Maguire  Mag Uidhir   dun-coloured
 40  Nolan   Ó Nualláin   famous
 41  Flynn   Ó Floinn   bright red
 42  Thompson  Mac Tomáis   son of Thom
 43  O’Callaghan  Ó Ceallacháin   bright headed
 44  O’Donnell  Ó Domhnaill   world-mighty
 45  Duffy   Ó Dufaigh   dark, black
 46  O’Mahony  Ó Mathúna   bear-calf
 47  Boyle   Ó Baoill   vain pledge
 48  Healy   Ó hÉalaighthe   artistic, scientific
 49  O’Shea  Ó Séaghdha   fine, stately
 50  White   Mac Giolla Bháin  of fair complexion
 51  Sweeney  Mac Suibhne   pleasant
 52  Hayes   Ó hAodha   fire
 53  Kavanagh  Caomhánach   comely, mild
 54  Power   de Paor   the poor man
 55  McGrath  Mac Craith   son of grace
 56  Moran   Ó Móráin   great
 57  Brady   Mac Brádaigh   spirited
 58  Stewart  Stiobhard   one who superintends
 59  Casey   Ó Cathasaigh   vigilant in war, watchful
 60  Foley   Ó Foghladh   a plunderer
 61  Fitzpatrick  Mac Giolla Phádraig  devotee of Saint Patrick
 62  O’Leary  Ó Laoghaire   calf-herd
 63  McDonnell  Mac Domhnaill  world-mighty
 64  MacMahon  Mac Mathúna   bear-calf
 65  Donnelly  Ó Donnghaile   brown valour
 66  Regan   Ó Riagáin   little king
 67  Donovan  Ó Donnabháin   brown, black
 68  Burns     from Scottish Burness
 69  Flanagan  Ó Flannagáin   red, ruddy
 70  Mullan  Ó Maoláin   bald
 71  Barry   de Barra   Cambro-Norman name
 72  Kane   Ó Catháin   battler
 73  Robinson      son of Robert
 74  Cunningham      Scottish name
 75  Griffin  Ó Gríofa   Welsh: Gruffudd
 76  Kenny   Ó Cionaoith   fire sprung
 77  Sheehan  O’Siodhachain   peaceful
 78  Ward   Mac an Bhaird  son of the bard
 79  Whelan  Ó Faoláin   wolf
 80  Lyons   Ó Laighin   grey
 81  Reid     red haired,
ruddy complexion
 82  Graham      grey home
 83  Higgins  Ó hUiginn  
 84  Cullen   Ó Cuilinn   holly
 92  O’Keeffe  Ó Caoimh   gentle
 93  Magee   Mag Aoidh   fire
 94  MacNamara  Mac Conmara   hound of the sea
 95  MacDonald  Mac Dónaill   world-mighty
 96  MacDermott  Mac Diarmada  free from jealousy
 97  Molony  Ó Maolomhnaigh  servant of the Church
 98  O’Rourke  Ó Ruairc  
 99  Buckley  Ó Buachalla   cow herd
 100  O’Dwyer  Ó Dubhuir   black

1 Comment

  1. My mom told me that my maiden name Neary use to be O’Neary but generations ago they dropped the O. Now I know why I want to see Ireland and learn about it so much.

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